United Academics Scholarship Application Form - 2019


Each year, United Academics (UA), the faculty union of the University of Vermont, awards several scholarships to students pursuing social and economic justice. Below find the description, eligibility and application criteria for each scholarship, followed by an online application form. We recommend that applicants gather all necessary documents prior to starting the application. Only completed applications recieved by the deadline will be reviewed by the UA Scholarship Committee. 

Application deadline for all scholarships is Friday, March 22, 2019.

Recipients will be notified by end of business, Tuesday, April 30, 2019.


Jeffrey Brace Scholarship

United Academics awards several $500 Jeffrey Brace Scholarships to students with an active commitment to community service, especially in pursuit of social or economic justice. The scholarship is named in honor of Jeffrey Brace, an early 19th-century Black Vermonter, former slave and activist. Scholarship recipients will be selected based on demonstrated involvement in community service, especially activities related to social and/or economic justice, in keeping with United Academics' values.

All currently enrolled UVM students are eligible to apply for the Jeffrey Brace Scholarship.

To apply for a Brace Scholarship, applicant must submit:

  • an essay (no more than 750 words) that outlines one’s interest and involvement in community service and social and/or economic justice, and
  • a recommendation letter from a faculty or community member who's familiar with applicant's involvement with social and/or economic justice activities. 

Linda Backus Memorial Scholarship

The Linda Backus Memorial Scholarship of $1,000 is presented to an undergraduate student for outstanding community service, especially in pursuit of social or economic justice. The scholarship is named in honor of Linda Backus, former UVM professor of education, committed union organizer, and second president of United Academics.

To be eligible, applicant must have:

  • completed two years at a higher education institution (not necessarily in Vermont), and
  • an immediate family member - parent, step-parent, guardian, sibling, step-sibling - who is a member of any union in Vermont.

To apply for the Backus Scholarship, applicant must submit:

  • an essay (no more than 750 words) that describes involvement in community service, especially as related to social and/or economic justice causes;
  • documentation of immediate family member's union affiliation in Vermont (such as a photocopy or scan of a union card; to upload this document file formats must be png, gif, doc, odt, jpg, pdf and under 2048 KB each);
  • a recommendation letter from a faculty or community member who's familiar with applicant's involvement with social and/or economic justice activities. 

Note: All UVM students who apply for the Backus Scholarship will automatically be considered for a Jeffrey Brace Scholarship.


David Shiman Scholarship

The David Shiman Scholarship of $1,500 is presented to a UVM senior with an outstanding and sustained record of community service, especially in pursuit of social or economic justice. The scholarship is named in honor of David Shiman, longtime professor of education at UVM and past president of United Academics.

To be eligible, applicant must have:

  • senior standing at the University of Vermont, and
  • a minimum CGPA of 3.0. 

To apply for the Shiman Scholarship, applicant must submit 

  • an essay (no more than 1000 words) that describes involvement in community service, especially as related to social and/or economic justice causes;
  • documentation of applicant’s CGPA (such as a screenshot or scan of transcript; to upload this document file formats must be png, gif, doc, odt, jpg, pdf and under 2048 KB each);
  • a recommendation letter from a faculty or community member who's familiar with applicant's involvement with social and/or economic justice activities. 

Note: All students who apply for the Shiman Scholarship will automatically be considered for a Jeffrey Brace Scholarship.


As part of this application, applicants must submit a 100-word biographical statement which may be published on the United Academics website, if selected for a scholarship.  


Questions? Email Dr. Vijay Kanagala, Chair, United Academics Scholarship Committee


To know more about Jeffrey Brace, Linda Backus and David Shiman, please click here